Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain

NOV 2016

LC/DBM provides landscape contractors with Educational, Imaginative and Practical information about their business, their employees, their machines and their projects.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 33 of 63

& A Midwestern lighting pro may never consider sea turtles in his lighting plans, but these endangered animals are very much on the minds of professionals charged with il- luminating beachfronts along southern coastal states. Why the Concern? All species of sea turtles have a tough time adapting to humans intruding upon their sea- side habitats. The primary threat occurs along beaches where turtles bury their eggs in the sand. When these eggs hatch (always at night), the hatchlings emerge and must quickly make their way to the ocean – guided by natural light that reflects off the water's surface. If any other light is present on the beach, such as from buildings, streets, or parking lots, then turtles become confused and head away from the water, making them easy tar- gets for birds and other predators. That's why we work to eliminate (or change) the offen - sive artificial light whenever possible. What Regions Are Affected? Nearly all seaside communities in Florida have adopted turtle-friendly lighting ordi- nances. Other states, including Texas, Geor- gia, and the Carolinas have regional regula- tions as well. Even though West Coast states have large populations of sea turtles in their waters, most of those turtles have nesting grounds farther south in Central America. A Turtle-Friendly Lighting Project: The Sheraton Sand-Key Resort Located on the Gulf of Mexico, in Clearwa- ter, Florida, the Sheraton Sand-Key Resort is prime territory for sea turtle nesting. With a long history of environmental responsibility, the hotel reached out to Rick Bequette of Bril- liant Nights. His task: to upgrade the resort's lighting to fully conform to turtle-friendly guidelines. The lighting upgrade involved significant changes. All path lights, area lights and spot- lights throughout the property were to be 34 LC DBM & Friends or Foes? By Steve Parrott, VOLT® Lighting PHOTOS: VOLT® LIGHTING Above: As mandated by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Sheraton Sand- Key Resort in Clearwater, Fla., modified their landscape lighting to become turtle-friendly, which means that light visible from the beach is not enough to draw newly hatched turtles towards it. The hatchings rely on being guided to the safety of the ocean by natural light reflecting off the water. If they move inland instead, they are vulnerable to predators, vehicles and other dangers. The resort chose Rick Bequette of Brilliant Nights to design and install the project. Left: The guidelines include mounting the fixtures as low as possible and shielding them fully to minimize light trespass, using the lowest amount of light needed, and light sources with long wavelengths – that is, colored amber or red. To help accomplish that, Bequette selected VOLT Elevator path and area lights with varied stem lengths according to proximity to the beach – the nearest ones are less than 12 inches tall. The fixtures' clear glass lenses were replaced with special amber polycarbonate lenses. The lenses underwent spectrophotometric analysis to ensure that the projected light had wavelengths greater than 560 nm. Below: To reduce the monochromatic cast of the amber lighting, Infiniti G3 brass, LED spotlights with warm white sources and oversized glare shields were used to uplight palm trees with a minimal level of light. Tests were conducted to make sure the amount of reflected light towards the beach was acceptable. Sea Turtles Sea Turtles Lighting Designers Lighting Designers

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of Landscape Contractor / Design Build Maintain - NOV 2016